As Rishi Sunak settles in to sort the impenetrable problems of the UK there is a sizeable minority still agitating for national dismemberment into four smaller entities or if you will three and an integrated Ireland.
The wee spicey leader of Scotland is the nearest to achieving independence but none in Wales, Ireland or Scotland have so far have faced the issue of fiscal deficit. Each separate national entity depends, whether they like it or not, on the South East of England including greater London which contributes the by far largest income to the UK Government.
In the meantime everyone is whining about the cost of living, inflation and all. Nichola Sturgeon, in Scotland, Adam Price in Wales and Sinn Fain in Northern Ireland are all to the foe, all omitting the real issues of interdependency, At least Drakeford, the First Minister in Wales professes to be a Unionist, but sees no issue with a cooperative agreement with Plaid Cymru..
In 2021 all countries and all regions had fiscal deficits, London being the lowest but still with a deficit of £800 per head, N Ireland had a deficit twelve (12) times that. But its not all about balancing regional expenditure and income. It is about the fiscal whole of the UK – regional and national home rule aside.
What Sunak faces now, some of his own doing – is an overall deficit whose only short term route to cure is austerity. Whilst cutting money supply we must bring supply and demand into some form of balance. What do we do know? The demands of the Defence of the realm, The NHS, Education and Welfare all have legitimate voracious demands.
Where is the opportunity for growth in all this?
It seems that each region in the UK must front up as a contributor to the UK economy as a whole and not continue either as a begging bowl economy or a separate economic entity. One for all and all for one seems appropriate. That we will suffer in the short term is inevitable, but at the same time we must save personally and nationally. We must stop asking, and politicians must stop giving in to popular demand, be they right or left wing.
The story of the UK must be based on fiscal discipline and fairness in bearing the burden. Petty nationalism does not seem a way to go.